Huntsville moves closer to establishing Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

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Huntsville City Hall

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — A new ordinance passed last week could establish Huntsville’s long-awaited Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Last Thursday, the Huntsville City Council unanimously passed the introduction of an ordinance to rename the city’s Office of Multicultural Affairs to the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Kenny Anderson, who currently serves as Huntsville’s Multicultural Affairs Officer, would transition into the role of director for the new agency.

Kenny Anderson, pictured above, is the current Multicultural Affairs Officer for Huntsville. (huntsvilleal.gov)

“We think what this transition represents is an opportunity to better understand how we’re providing City services and to identify gaps in service provisions,” he said. “It also allows us to expand our training abilities as well as our community engagement opportunities.”

The move by the Council comes almost one year after Mayor Tommy Battle laid out the plans for the new city agency. He says the change would allow the office to better serve the community.

“Establishing the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion would be critical in ensuring we are doing everything we can as a City to meet the needs of our citizens,” Mayor Battle said. “I look forward to conversations and programs that both challenge and inspire us to build a better Huntsville.”

Battle launched the Office of Multicultural Affairs over a decade ago.

The Council will now vote on the ordinances during its August 26 meeting. If approved, Anderson says the changes to his office would take place immediately and an assistant director position would become open.

“Our community is growing rapidly, and part of that growth is being fueled by technology and communication,” Anderson said. “It’s important to have somebody who can make adjustments and blend into that environment where things are changing quickly.”

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